After the Bears helped us make Warrior Wishes come true in Chicago & we scrambled to get my dad a new phone, he took a train back to the city to catch an overnight bus to Indianapolis to Make Warrior Wishes come true at our 5th game in 9 days!

Over the last 3 years, we have made some unforgettable memories making Warrior Wishes come true in Indianapolis.

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My dad arrived in Indy around 2:30am and got some sleep in the bus station before planning the day & hanging out with the ESPN crew at the Starbucks by the stadium.  Today we are honoring the Legacy of Marine Sgt Bradley Atwell & hosting surviving family members at the Colts game in his honor.

MARINE SGT BRADLEY ATWELL

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SGT Atwell was born in Kokomo, Indiana on February 20, 1985.  He graduated from Taylor High School in 2003 & went on to attend various colleges, most recently, while in Afghanistan, attending Thomas Edison State College, where he was only a few credits shy of his associates degree. While there, he was also logging hours so that he would be able to obtain his journeyman’s license. After a short stay in the Air Force he joined the United States Marine Corps where he worked as an aviation electrician and currently held the rank of a sergeant.

Brad had a passion for firearms and enjoyed off-roading in his truck. He was also a brown belt in MCMAP and enjoyed playing and watching baseball. He was a very loving husband, son, and brother, but most importantly an extremely courageous Marine.

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SGT Atwell made the ultimate sacrifice on September 15th, 2011, when around 15 insurgents dressed in U.S. Army uniforms infiltrated Camp Bastion with automatic rifles, rocket propelled grenade launchers and suicide vests.  SSG Jimbo Montemayor, who served for a time as Atwell’s superior, said the incident which made him a hero was his actions on the day he was killed in Afghanistan.

“Sgt. Atwell, at the sound of enemy fire, ran and beat down doors screaming at the top of his lungs, ‘Grab your gear, Marines, and let’s go,’” Montemayor said. “He ran towards enemy fire to engage the enemy, as any well-trained sergeant should.

“I’ve seen that intensity numerous times when he was in training,” he continued. “I can almost guarantee that he pursued the enemy without any fear of losing his life. These are the actions of a true hero.” said Montemayor.

“Bradley epitomized the Marine Corps ethos of the honor, courage and commitment,” wrote Lt. Col. P.D. Waugh in a letter to the family, which was read at his service. “He lived it everyday in the way he looked out for his Marines. You can be sure the Marines who worked and fought beside him will never forget the dedication and sacrifice that he made.”

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Photo by Sgt. Keonaona Paulo U.S. Marines honor Sgt. Bradley W. Atwell at a memorial service on Camp Bastion, Helmand province, Afghanistan Sept. 20, 2012. Atwell was an aircraft electrical/instrument and flight control technician with Marine Aviation Logistics Squadron 16, Marine Aircraft Group 16, 3D Marine Aircraft Wing (Forward), was killed in action while repealing an enemy attack on Camp Bastion Sept. 14, 2012.

Sgt. Brad Atwell is survived by his wife, Danielle Atwell of Yuma, Arizona; mother, Cheryl (Turnpaugh) Atwell, father and step-mother, Victor and Kimberlee Atwell; mother and father-in-law, Jeanette and Christopher Cross; brother, Dustin Atwell; two sisters; Erin and Lauren Atwell; and grandmother, Shirley (Turnpaugh) Oody, all of Kokomo, Indiana.

It was an honor to host surviving family members at the Colts game in SGT Atwell’s honor.  We would like to thank Harry & Izzy’s for hosting everyone for Dinner before the game and New Era for providing Colts caps for everyone.

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This was the 5th game of our 32 game mission to honor military warriors at all 32 NFL stadiums in 1 season for our 4th season in a row.  My dad will be back on the bus after the game and back in Chicago first thing in the morning.  He will have a few days off before we drive up to Minnesota this Sunday and then make our way over to Green Bay for the Monday night game.

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TOGETHER WE MAKE WARRIOR WISHES COME TRUE!